Kevin Stiner | November 03, 2022
Real Money. Real Investments. Real Experience.
The financial world and economy can be as tumultuous and chaotic as the weather, so just as a meteorologist learns to interpret the signs of mother nature, investment fund managers are trained to interpret the signs of bearish and bullish markets. This fall, SUNY Brockport’s School of Business and Management rolled out a new program, the Wade Investment Fund, which is designed for students to gain real world experience in managing investments.
The program provides a unique opportunity for students to engage with the market. Students receive advanced training in the field of finance that allows them to manage a real-money portfolio of investments rather than running simulations with hypothetical funds.
“I teach investment analysis and, in that class, we cover the theoretical aspects and how to do things,” said Professor Sandeep Singh. “But until you manage real money, you really don’t get to understand what is going on. You can write a good answer on a test, but unless you have a client and their welfare is in your hands, you really don’t understand the responsibility of things.”
Presently the class consists of four students led by Professor Singh. The students utilize the Bloomberg Financial Markets Lab for their research.
“You can write a good answer on a test, but unless you have a client and their welfare is in your hands, you really don’t understand the responsibility of things.”
Professor Sandeep Singh
“As a student in business/finance we tend to be taught how these economic factors affect our economy in a guided manner and how we can resolve them,” said Mickerson Joseph. “However, with this program you get a more hands-on approach. You will be able to personally experience how certain actions cause a reaction in your portfolio which can be good or bad. Moreover, if you are a portfolio management student you will be able to experience the amount of work and research that future jobs may require.”
The students are unanimously in agreement when it comes to recommending the course to others, citing the ability to gain experience that will undoubtedly give them an advantage when it comes time to seek employment.
“The Wade Management Fund is providing me with an opportunity to apply knowledge I have learned in my classes to manage a real-money portfolio,” said Rachel Swick. “The knowledge I gain from this course will help guide my post-graduation plans and open new doors in the finance industry.”
Over the first half of the semester, students prioritized researching the 11 investment sectors, inflation, interest rates, unemployment, and real gross domestic product (GDP) among other market indicators. As graduate student Justin Pangburn described it, “The fund will help me understand the leg work and research that goes into deciding why to invest in certain assets and industries.”
Singh is a strong advocate of research, especially when it comes towards the wellbeing of an investment portfolio. He points out that many people dedicate more time to researching the purchase of a refrigerator than buying stock despite significantly more impact on one’s finances. That’s why the Wade Investment Fund has devoted much of its time towards understanding the importance of research.
“The class specifically prepares you for work in investment management,” said Singh. “When you go tell an interviewer that you’ve done something like this, it’s a good conversation starter. And once you start talking about what you’ve done, it really tells the employer or perspective employer that yes, the student has gone through the process, has an understanding of the process, and they have really done hands-on work – analyzing the market, analyzing investments and managing investments and investment policies rather than just buying and selling things.”
Zachary Edwards is gaining valuable insight into the world of finance through the Wade Investment Fund and an internship with a bank. Not only is he acquiring practical work-related experiences, but he’s also gathering perspective on potential career paths.
“I would say that working with the Wade Investment Fund complements the work I’m doing at the bank,” shared Edwards. “Banks can’t trade in equities so that side of the financial world is something I wouldn’t have been able to see at the professional level if it wasn’t for the Wade Investment Fund.”
The fund was made possible by the support of brothers Chuck Wade ’06 and Ethan Wade ’11, who understand the importance of investment management as they are both Senior Vice Presidents and financial advisors for Brighton Securities. Additional individual support came from James Campbell ’65, Virginia Campbell ’89/’96, Janie Hill ’85, Paul Purfield ’74, and Karen Webber ’09 as well as corporate support from RBC Wealth Management, Merrill Lynch Wealth Management, Canandaigua National Bank & Trust, Advantage Federal Credit Union, Iconoclastic Capital, and Double Diamonds Financial Solutions.
Wade Investment Fund
Learn more about the Wade Investment Fund including the mission, overview, and ways to support the fund.